robertogreco + texting   104

Data for Social Good: Crisis Text Line CEO Nancy Lublin | Commonwealth Club
[video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRlCX597JhA ]

"Suicide and mental health are hard subjects—so Crisis Text Line leveraged the power of the data it collects to help their counselors determine the best way to talk about the topics with those in need. The nonprofit, founded in 2013 by CEO Nancy Lublin, has provided a free text-based and human-driven service to support those experiencing mental health stress, gathering data points from more than 75 million text messages sent and maximizing the impact of their information to better train counselors and support their community. Its innovative and data-driven methodology for tackling hard conversations can also be applied to more than the mental health space, including to Lublin’s latest venture: Loris.ai. 

Lublin’s entire career has focused on initiatives addressing social issues, and she founded Dress for Success and Do Something prior to Crisis Text Line. With her technology lens on big challenges, she continues to iterate on innovative mechanisms and creative solutions to sticky problems. At INFORUM, she’ll be joined in conversation by DJ Patil, head of technology at Devoted Health and former U.S. chief data scientist in the Obama administration, to dig into the power of data to effect change. Come curious!"
data  mentalhealth  socialgood  crisistext  nancylubin  djpatil  2019  nonprofit  nonprofits  911  socialmedia  suicide  society  government  crisiscounseling  emoji  language  communication  responsiveness  texting  sms  stress  funding  fundraising  storytelling  technology  siliconvalley  philanthropicindustrialcomplex  philanthropy  charity  startups  capitalism  importance  charitableindustrialcomplex  canon  noblesseoblige  humanism  relationship  courage  racism  connection  humanconnection  loneliness  pain 
5 days ago by robertogreco
What It Takes to Put Your Phone Away | The New Yorker
"During the first few days of my Internet decluttering, I found myself compulsively checking my unchanged in-box and already-read text messages, and scanning the same headlines over and over—attempting, as if bewitched, to see new information there. I took my dog out for longer walks, initially trying to use them for some productive purpose: spying on neighbors, planning my week. Soon I acquiesced to a dull, pleasant blankness. One afternoon, I draped myself on my couch and felt an influx of mental silence that was both disturbing and hallucinatorily pleasurable. I didn’t want to learn how to fix or build anything, or start a book club. I wanted to experience myself as soft and loose and purposeless, three qualities that, in my adulthood, have always seemed economically risky.

“Nothing is harder to do than nothing,” Jenny Odell writes, in her new book, “How to Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy” (Melville House). Odell, a multidisciplinary artist who teaches at Stanford, is perhaps best known for a pamphlet called “There’s No Such Thing as a Free Watch,” which she put together while in residence at the Museum of Capitalism, in Oakland. Odell investigated the origins of a blandly stylish watch that was being offered for free (plus shipping) on Instagram, and found a mirrored fun house of digital storefronts that looked as though they had been generated by algorithm. The retailers advertised themselves as brands that had physical origins in glitzy Miami Beach or hip San Francisco but were, in fact, placeless nodes in a vast web of scammy global wholesalers, behind which a human presence could hardly be discerned.

Like Newport, Odell thinks that we should spend less time on the Internet. Unlike him, she wants readers to question the very idea of productivity. Life is “more than an instrument and therefore something that cannot be optimized,” she writes. To find the physical world sufficiently absorbing, to conceive of the self as something that “exceeds algorithmic description”—these are not only “ends in and of themselves, but inalienable rights belonging to anyone lucky enough to be alive.” Odell details, with earnest wonder, moments in her life when she was reoriented toward these values. After the 2016 election, she began feeding peanuts to two crows on her balcony, and found comfort in the fact that “these essentially wild animals recognized me, that I had some place in their universe.” She also developed a fascination, via Google Maps, with the creek behind her old kindergarten, and she went to see it with a friend. She followed the creek bed, which, she learned, runs beneath Cupertino’s shopping centers and Apple’s headquarters. The creek became a reminder that under the “streamlined world of products, results, experiences, reviews” there is a “giant rock whose other lifeforms operate according to an ancient, oozing, almost chthonic logic.”

Odell elegantly aligns the crisis in our natural world and the crisis in our minds: what has happened to the natural world is happening to us, she contends, and it’s happening on the same soon-to-be-irreparable scale. She sees “little difference between habitat restoration in the traditional sense and restoring habitats for human thought”; both are endangered by “the logic of capitalist productivity.” She believes that, by constantly disclosing our needs and desires to tech companies that sift through our selfhood in search of profit opportunities, we are neglecting, even losing, our mysterious, murky depths—the parts of us that don’t serve an ulterior purpose but exist merely to exist. The “best, most alive parts” of ourselves are being “paved over by a ruthless logic of use.”

“Digital Minimalism” and “How to Do Nothing” could both be categorized as highbrow how-to—an artist and a computer scientist, both of them in their thirties, wrestling with the same timely prompt. (At one point, Odell writes, she thought of her book as activism disguised as self-help.) Rather than a philosophy of technology use, Odell offers a philosophy of modern life, which she calls “manifest dismantling,” and which she intends as the opposite of Manifest Destiny. It involves rejecting the sort of progress that centers on isolated striving, and emphasizing, instead, caregiving, maintenance, and the interdependence of things. Odell grew up in the Bay Area, and her work is full of unabashed hippie moments that might provoke cynicism. But, for me—and, I suspect, for others who have come of age alongside the Internet and have coped with the pace and the precariousness of contemporary living with a mixture of ambient fatalism and flares of impetuous tenderness—she struck a hopeful nerve of possibility that I hadn’t felt in a long time.

Odell writes about the first electronic bulletin-board system, which was set up, in Berkeley, in 1972, as a “communal memory bank.” She contrasts it with Nextdoor, a notoriously paranoid neighborhood-based social platform that was recently valued at $1.5 billion, inferring that the profit motive had perverted what can be a healthy civic impulse. Newport, who does not have any social-media accounts of his own, generally treats social media’s current profit model as an unfortunate inevitability. Odell believes that there is another way. She cites, for example, the indie platform Mastodon, which is crowdfunded and decentralized. (It is made up of independently operated nodes, called “instances,” on which users can post short messages, or “toots.”) To make money from something—a forest, a sense of self—is often to destroy it. Odell brings up a famous redwood in Oakland called Old Survivor, which is estimated to be almost five hundred years old. Unlike all the other trees of its kind in the area, it was never cut down, because it was runty and twisted and situated on a rocky slope; it appeared unprofitable to loggers. The tree, she writes, is an image of “resistance-in-place,” of something that has escaped capitalist appropriation. As Odell sees it, the only way forward is to be like Old Survivor. We have to be able to do nothing—to merely bear witness, to stay in place, to create shelter for one another—to endure."



"My Newport-inspired Internet cleanse happened to coincide with a handful of other events that made me feel raw and unmanageable. It was the end of winter, with its sudden thaws and strange fluctuations—the type of weather where a day of sunshine feels like a stranger being kind to you when you cry. I had just finished writing a book that had involved going through a lot of my past. The hours per day that I had spent converting my experience into something of professional and financial value were now empty, and I was cognizant of how little time I had spent caring for the people and things around me. I began thinking about my selfhood as a meadow of wildflowers that had been paved over by the Internet. I started frantically buying houseplants.

I also found myself feeling more grateful for my phone than ever. I had become more conscious of why I use technology, and how it meets my needs, as Newport recommended. It’s not nothing that I can text my friends whenever I think about them, or get on Viber and talk to my grandmother in the Philippines, or sit on the B54 bus and distract myself from the standstill traffic by looking up the Fermi paradox and listening to any A Tribe Called Quest song that I want to hear. All these capacities still feel like the stuff of science fiction, and none of them involve Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook. It occurred to me that two of the most straightforwardly beloved digital technologies—podcasts and group texts—push against the attention economy’s worst characteristics. Podcasts often demand sustained listening, across hours and weeks, to a few human voices. Group texts are effectively the last noncommercialized social spaces on many millennials’ phones.

On the first day of April, I took stock of my digital experiment. I had not become a different, better person. I had not acquired any high-value leisure activities. But I had felt a sort of persistent ache and wonder that pulled me back to a year that I spent in the Peace Corps, wandering in the dust at the foot of sky-high birch trees, terrified and thrilled at the sensation of being unknowable, mysterious to myself, unseen. I watered my plants, and I loosened my StayFocusd settings, back to forty-five daily minutes. I considered my Freedom parameters, which I had already learned to break, and let them be."
jiatolentino  2019  internet  attention  jennyodell  capitalism  work  busyness  resistance  socialmedia  instagram  twitter  facebook  infooverload  performance  web  online  nature  nextdoor  advertising  thoreau  philosophy  care  caring  maintenance  silence  happiness  anxiety  leisurearts  artleisure  commodification  technology  selfhood  identity  sms  texting  viber  podcasts  grouptexts  digitalminimalism  refusal  calnewport  mobile  phones  smartphones  screentime  ralphwaldoemerson  separatism  interdependence 
25 days ago by robertogreco
John McWhorter: How Texting ‘LOL’ Changed Communication - The Atlantic
[on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hA6V_th9rQw ]

"“Today, communication is much more fluid, much more varied, much subtler—it's better,” says John McWhorter, professor of linguistics at Columbia University, author, and frequent contributor to The Atlantic, in a new video from the 2018 Aspen Ideas Festival. A big reason for this advancement in communication is, McWorther argues, the advent of texting—and even more specifically, the proliferation of the acronym “LOL.”

In the video, McWorther explains how LOL “ended up creeping in and replacing involuntary laughter,” and what meant for the new era of informal, nuanced communication. “It used to be that if you were going to write in any real way beyond the personal letter, there were all these rules you were afraid you were breaking—and you probably were,” he says. “It wasn't a comfortable form. You can write comfortably now.”"
johnmcwhorter  texting  texts  lol  2018  communication  language  linguistics  mobile  phones  change  flirting  fluidity  informal  informality  comfort  nuance  optimism 
september 2018 by robertogreco
Textra SMS
"Simple. Beautiful. Fast.
Textra is a seriously beautiful, feature rich SMS and MMS app."

[See also: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.textra ]
sms  mms  android  texting 
april 2018 by robertogreco
Ask Dr. Time: Orality and Literacy from Homer to Twitter
"So, as to the original question: are Twitter and texting new forms of orality? I have a simple answer and a complex one, but they’re both really the same.

The first answer is so lucid and common-sense, you can hardly believe that it’s coming from Dr. Time: if it’s written, it ain’t oral. Orality requires speech, or song, or sound. Writing is visual. If it’s visual and only visual, it’s not oral.

The only form of genuine speech that’s genuinely visual and not auditory is sign language. And sign language is speech-like in pretty much every way imaginable: it’s ephemeral, it’s interactive, there’s no record, the signs are fluid. But even most sign language is at least in part chirographic, i.e., dependent on writing and written symbols. At least, the sign languages we use today: although our spoken/vocal languages are pretty chirographic too.

Writing, especially writing in a hyperliterate society, involves a transformation of the sensorium that privileges vision at the expense of hearing, and privileges reading (especially alphabetic reading) over other forms of visual interpretation and experience. It makes it possible to take in huge troves of information in a limited amount of time. We can read teleprompters and ticker-tape, street signs and medicine bottles, tweets and texts. We can read things without even being aware we’re reading them. We read language on the move all day long: social media is not all that different.

Now, for a more complicated explanation of that same idea, we go back to Father Ong himself. For Ong, there’s a primary orality and a secondary orality. The primary orality, we’ve covered; secondary orality is a little more complicated. It’s not just the oral culture of people who’ve got lots of experience with writing, but of people who’ve developed technologies that allow them to create new forms of oral communication that are enabled by writing.

The great media forms of secondary orality are the movies, television, radio, and the telephone. All of these are oral, but they’re also modern media, which means the media reshapes it in its own image: they squeeze your toothpaste through its tube. But they’re also transformative forms of media in a world that’s dominated by writing and print, because they make it possible to get information in new ways, according to new conventions, and along different sensory channels.

Walter Ong died in 2003, so he never got to see social media at its full flower, but he definitely was able to see where electronic communications was headed. Even in the 1990s, people were beginning to wonder whether interactive chats on computers fell under Ong’s heading of “secondary orality.” He gave an interview where he tried to explain how he saw things — as far as I know, relatively few people have paid attention to it (and the original online source has sadly linkrotted away):
“When I first used the term ‘secondary orality,’ I was thinking of the kind of orality you get on radio and television, where oral performance produces effects somewhat like those of ‘primary orality,’ the orality using the unprocessed human voice, particularly in addressing groups, but where the creation of orality is of a new sort. Orality here is produced by technology. Radio and television are ‘secondary’ in the sense that they are technologically powered, demanding the use of writing and other technologies in designing and manufacturing the machines which reproduce voice. They are thus unlike primary orality, which uses no tools or technology at all. Radio and television provide technologized orality. This is what I originally referred to by the term ‘secondary orality.’

I have also heard the term ‘secondary orality’ lately applied by some to other sorts of electronic verbalization which are really not oral at all—to the Internet and similar computerized creations for text. There is a reason for this usage of the term. In nontechnologized oral interchange, as we have noted earlier, there is no perceptible interval between the utterance of the speaker and the hearer’s reception of what is uttered. Oral communication is all immediate, in the present. Writing, chirographic or typed, on the other hand, comes out of the past. Even if you write a memo to yourself, when you refer to it, it’s a memo which you wrote a few minutes ago, or maybe two weeks ago. But on a computer network, the recipient can receive what is communicated with no such interval. Although it is not exactly the same as oral communication, the network message from one person to another or others is very rapid and can in effect be in the present. Computerized communication can thus suggest the immediate experience of direct sound. I believe that is why computerized verbalization has been assimilated to secondary ‘orality,’ even when it comes not in oral-aural format but through the eye, and thus is not directly oral at all. Here textualized verbal exchange registers psychologically as having the temporal immediacy of oral exchange. To handle [page break] such technologizing of the textualized word, I have tried occasionally to introduce the term ‘secondary literacy.’ We are not considering here the production of sounded words on the computer, which of course are even more readily assimilated to ‘secondary orality’” (80-81).

So tweets and text messages aren’t oral. They’re secondarily literate. Wait, that sounds horrible! How’s this: they’re artifacts and examples of secondary literacy. They’re what literacy looks like after television, the telephone, and the application of computing technologies to those communication forms. Just as orality isn’t the same after you’ve introduced writing, and manuscript isn’t the same after you’ve produced print, literacy isn’t the same once you have networked orality. In this sense, Twitter is the necessary byproduct of television.

Now, where this gets really complicated is with stuff like Siri and Alexa, and other AI-driven, natural-language computing interfaces. This is almost a tertiary orality, voice after texting, and certainly voice after interactive search. I’d be inclined to lump it in with secondary orality in that broader sense of technologically-mediated orality. But it really does depend how transformative you think client- and cloud-side computing, up to and including AI, really are. I’m inclined to say that they are, and that Alexa is doing something pretty different from what the radio did in the 1920s and 30s.

But we have to remember that we’re always much more able to make fine distinctions about technology deployed in our own lifetime, rather than what develops over epochs of human culture. Compared to that collision of oral and literate cultures in the Eastern Mediterranean that gave us poetry, philosophy, drama, and rhetoric in the classical period, or the nexus of troubadours, scholastics, printers, scientific meddlers and explorers that gave us the Renaissance, our own collision of multiple media cultures is probably quite small.

But it is genuinely transformative, and it is ours. And some days it’s as charming to think about all the ways in which our heirs will find us completely unintelligible as it is to imagine the complex legacy we’re bequeathing them."
2018  timcarmody  classics  homer  literature  poetry  literacy  orality  odyssey  walterong  secondaryorality  writing  texting  sms  twitter  socialmedia  technology  language  communication  culture  oraltradition  media  film  speech  signlanguage  asl  tv  television  radio  telephones  phones 
january 2018 by robertogreco
How Fonts Are Fueling the Culture Wars – Backchannel
"Typography is undergoing a public renaissance. Typography usually strives to be invisible, but recently it’s become a mark of sophistication for readers to notice it and have an opinion.

Suddenly, people outside of the design profession seem to care about its many intricacies. Usually, this awareness focuses on execution. This year’s Oscars put visual hierarchy on the map. XKCD readers will never miss an opportunity to point out bad keming. And anyone on the internet can tell you, Comic Sans has become a joke.

But by focusing on the smaller gaffes, we’re missing the big picture. Typography is much bigger than a “gotcha” moment for the visually challenged. Typography can silently influence: It can signify dangerous ideas, normalize dictatorships, and sever broken nations. In some cases it may be a matter of life and death. And it can do this as powerfully as the words it depicts.

***

Why We’re Afraid of Blackletter

You’ve seen blackletter typography before. It’s dense, old-fashioned, and elaborate. It almost always feels like an anachronism. It looks like this:

[image]

But usually when you see it in popular culture, it looks more like this:

[image]

Or like this:

[image]

You probably know blackletter as the script of choice for bad guys, prison tattoos, and black metal album art—and you wouldn’t be wrong.

Blackletter looks esoteric and illegible now, but it started off as a normal pattern that people across Europe used every day for hundreds of years. It stayed that way until pretty recently. It reigned as the dominant typeface in the English-speaking world for several generations, and remains popular in parts of the Spanish-speaking world today.

Why don’t we use blackletter anymore? The answer is literally “Hitler.” Nazi leadership used Fraktur, an archetypal variety of blackletter, as their official typeface. They positioned it as a symbol of German national identity and denounced papers that printed with anything else.

As you might imagine, the typeface hasn’t aged well in the post-war period. In just a few years, blackletter went from ordinary to a widespread taboo—the same way the name “Adolf” and the toothbrush mustache have been all but eradicated.

The Nazis played a part in this. In 1941, the regime re-characterized Fraktur as Judenletter, “Jewish letters,” and systematically banned it from use. The long history of Jewish writers and printers had tainted the letterforms themselves, they argued, and it was time for Germany to move on. Historians speculate that the reversal had more to do with the logistics of occupying countries reliant on Latin typefaces, but the result was the same. No printed matter of any kind could use Fraktur, for German audiences or abroad. Even blackletter handwriting was banned from being taught in school.

Think about that: The government of one of the world’s great powers banned a typeface. That is the power of a symbol.

***

It’s Hard to Text in Arabic

We take it for granted that we can type any word with a keyboard, but really, you should check your anglophone privilege. In English, each letter stands on its own, while Arabic connects every letter in a word, allowing many letters to take on new shapes based on context. Arabic lends itself to lush and poetic calligraphy, but it doesn’t square with traditional European methods for making typefaces.

Much of the Arab world fell under Western colonial rule, and print communication remained a challenge. Rather than rethinking or expanding the conventions that had been designed around the Latin alphabet, the colonial powers changed Arabic. What we see in books and newspapers to this day is a ghost of Arabic script, reworked to use discrete letters that behave on a standard printing press.

It’s not surprising that colonial powers would pull their subjects closer to their center of gravity. But even today, many Arab countries struggle with that legacy. There are over 100,000 ways to format a word in English; the Arabic world only has about 100 clunky typefaces to support communication between half a billion people.

Rana Abou Rjeily, a contemporary Lebanese designer, is reclaiming Arabic typography. After studying design in the US and UK, she developed Mirsaal, an experimental typeface to bridge the gap between Arabic and Latin text.

Mirsaal looks for the right balance of western conventions to make Arabic work in a modern context. It uses simplified, distinct letterforms, but with the goal of making written Arabic more expressive and authentic.

This isn’t a purely symbolic exercise. The Middle East is dealing with political instability that stems from deep cultural divisions. It is not hard to imagine how a more robust written language might play some role in making a better future.

***

Piecing Together the Balkans

The Balkans are synonymous with fragmentation. The region has seen generations of violence, much spurred by the ethnic tensions within. Their typography reflects these divisions. The regional languages are a hodgepodge of typographic spheres: Latin, Blackletter, Cyrillic, and Arabic. Never mind the locally designed Glagolitic scripts.

Typography took on special meaning during the Cold War, as Latin and Cyrillic alphabets came to symbolize allegiance to global powers.

Since the fall of the Soviet Union, typography continues to communicate political leanings, be they nostalgia for the Soviet era or alignment with the globalized West. Using the wrong typeface could get you in a lot of trouble.

In 2013, Croatian designers Nikola Djurek and Marija Juza created the East-West hybrid Balkan Sans. Balkan Sans uses the same glyphs to represent the equivalent letters in Latin and Cyrillic alphabets. In the words of its makers, it “… demystifies, depoliticizes, and reconciles them for the sake of education, tolerance, and, above all, communication.”

Croatian and Serbian are similar languages that could hardly look more different in their written forms. Balkan Sans makes them mutually intelligible, so that two neighbors might be able to correspond over email without thinking twice. They transformed typography from a barrier between nations into an olive branch.

***

The Culture War at Home

The US is not so different from the rest of the world when it comes to tribalism and conflicted identity. This has crystalized in last few months, and we’ve seen typography play a substantial role.

Hillary Clinton ran for president with a slick logo befitting a Fortune 100 company. It had detractors, but I think we’ll remember it fondly as a symbol of what could have been — clarity, professionalism, and restraint.

Donald Trump countered with a garish baseball cap that looked like it had been designed in a Google Doc by the man himself. This proved to be an effective way of selling Trump’s unique brand.

I’m not interested in whether Clinton or Trump had good logos. I’m interested in the different values they reveal. Clinton’s typography embodies the spirit of modernism and enlightenment values. It was designed to appeal to smart, progressive people who like visual puns. They appreciate the serendipity of an arrow that completes a lettermark while also symbolizing progress. In other words, coastal elites who like “design.”
Trump’s typography speaks with a more primal, and seemingly earnest voice. “Make America Great Again” symbolizes “Make America Great Again.” It tells everyone what team you’re on, and what you believe in. Period. It speaks to a distrust of “clean” corporate aesthetics and snobs who think they’re better than Times New Roman on a baseball cap. Its mere existence is a political statement.

The two typographies are mutually intelligible at first glance, but a lot gets lost in translation. We live in a divided country, split on typographic lines as cleanly as the Serbs and the Croats.

***

I’d Like to Leave You With a Mission:

The next time you go shopping, download an app or send an email, take a second to look at the typography in front of you. Don’t evaluate it. Don’t critique it. Just observe it. What does it say about you? What does it say about the world you live in?

The stakes are higher than you think. The next generation of fascists will not love geometric sans serifs as much as Mussolini did. They won’t be threatening journalists in blackletter.

The world is changing around us. We constantly debate and analyze the conflicts between the militaries, governments and cultures that surround us. But there’s a visual war that’s happening right in front of our eyes, undetected. Its power — to divide us or bring us together — hinges on our choice to pay attention."
typography  arabic  history  2017  benhersh  ranaabourjeily  mussolini  politics  donaldtrump  hillaryclinton  design  graphicdesign  division  croatia  serbia  mirsaal  colonialism  decolonization  text  texting  technology  blackletter  adolfhitler 
may 2017 by robertogreco
Twine Texting Project by shindigs
"A presentation layer for Twine 1.4x that allows you to tell stories through text conversations. Built on top of Jonah. Download to access the commented project file.

Please tweet me @shindags with any questions, suggestions, and especially if you made something with this asset!

Development was streamed on www.twitch.tv/shindigs "
twine  chat  2017  webdev  cyoa  texting  messaging  if  interactivefiction  webdesign 
april 2017 by robertogreco
Emoji Salad
"the text msg Pictionary party"
emoji  games  play  texting  sms 
november 2016 by robertogreco
John Berger: ‘If I’m a storyteller it’s because I listen’ | Books | The Guardian
"After lunch we move into his study, a den of paintings, a place of light, its windows thrown wide, looking on to trees. He tries to make himself comfortable on the white sofa, an arthritic back giving him trouble. As a writer, Berger has that rare and wonderful gift of being able to make complex thoughts simple. He once said, in a BBC interview with Jeremy Isaacs, that he likes, in all his work, to follow the advice of the photographer Robert Capa: “When the picture is not good enough, go closer…” His eye for detail remains unrivalled and consistently surprising (think of his irresistible observation that cows walk as if they were wearing high heels). Reading him is like standing at a window – perhaps a bit like the window of this study – with no one blocking the view. “The way I observe comes naturally to me as a curious person – I’m like la vigie – the lookout guy on a boat who does small jobs, maybe such as shovelling stuff into a boiler, but I’m no navigator – absolutely the opposite. I wander around the boat, find odd places – the masts, the gunwale – and then simply look out at the ocean. Being aware of travelling has nothing to do with being a navigator.”"



"In 1944 he joined up, refusing a commission with the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire light infantry, and became a lance corporal at a training camp. He preferred the company of working-class recruits, for whom he became a scribe, writing their letters home. In a sense, he has continued to do this all his life: telling other people’s stories lest they vanish. In a conversation with Susan Sontag, he once said: “A story is always a rescuing operation.” And he has also said (in The Seasons in Quincy): “If I’m a storyteller it’s because I listen. For me, a storyteller is like a passeur who gets contraband across a frontier.”"



"And what does he think about Brexit? He leans back on the sofa (we have now shifted from the overheated study into a cooler parlour, a sofa crawl in operation) and admits it has always been important to him to define himself as European. He then attempts to describe what he sees as the bigger picture: “It seems to me that we have to return, to recapitulate what globalisation meant, because it meant that capitalism, the world financial organisations, became speculative and ceased to be first and foremost productive, and politicians lost nearly all their power to take political decisions – I mean politicians in the traditional sense. Nations ceased to be what they were before.” In Meanwhile (the last essay in Landscapes) he notes that the word “horizon” has slipped out of view in political discourse. And he adds, returning to Brexit, that he voted with his feet long ago, moving to France.

We talk about what it is for a person to adopt a foreign country as home, and about how it is possible to love a landscape like a familiar face. For Berger, that face is the Haute-Savoie. “This is the landscape I lived in for decades [he left only after Beverly died; his son Yves still lives there with his family]. It matters to me because during that time, I worked there like a peasant. OK, don’t let’s exaggerate. I didn’t work as hard as they did but I worked pretty hard, doing exactly the same things as the peasants, working with them. This landscape was part of my energy, my body, my satisfaction and discomfort. I loved it not because it was a view – but because I participated in it.”

He explains: “The connection between the human condition and labour is frequently forgotten, and for me was always so important. At 16, I went down a coal mine in Derbyshire and spent a day on the coal face – just watching the miners. It had a profound effect.” What did it make you feel? “Respect,” he says quietly. “Just respect. There are two kinds. Respect to do with ceremony – what happens when you visit the House of Lords. And a completely different respect associated with danger.” He says: “This is not a prescription for others, but when I look back on my life I think it’s very significant I never went to a university. I refused to go. Lots of people were pushing me and I said, ‘No. I don’t want to’, because those years at university form a whole way of thinking.” And you feel free from that? “Yes.”"



"As he nudges closer to 90, Berger feels his own way of seeing has changed surprisingly little, although, he points out, technology has changed the way younger generations explore art. He admits, then, to his enthusiasm for texting: “I’ve been a fan for a long while because it’s like whispers – and with that goes intimacy, secrecy, playfulness…” But there is nothing fixed about the way he sees. He believes one never sees the same picture twice: “The second time I saw the Grünewald altarpiece was after a terrorist attack – it was the same painting yet I saw it differently.” The importance of certain painters has shifted too. He reveres Modigliani less, admires Velázquez more: “When one is young, one likes drama, excitation, bravura – Velázquez has none of this.”"



"But Berger’s greatest strength in old age is his ability to live in the present. “I cultivated this early on – and this is the paradox – because it was an escape from prescriptions, prophecies, consequences and causes.” The present moment is key to his thinking too. In Ways of Seeing, he suggests that paintings embody the present in which they were painted. Defining the secret of reading aloud well, he says it is “refusing to look ahead, to be in the moment”. And he says that a story puts its listener “in an eternal present”. He has also written about the circularity of time. Does he think that applies to an individual life? Is there, in old age, a way in which one starts to hold hands with one’s younger self?"
johnberger  art  seeing  listening  2016  observation  noticing  storytelling  writing  robertcapa  presence  migration  reading  marxism  globalization  capitalism  participation  labor  participatory  texting  intimacy  secrecy  playfulness 
october 2016 by robertogreco
Pushbullet - Chrome Web Store
"Bringing together your devices, friends, and the things you care about.
Pushbullet is "the app you never knew you needed", according to CNET. Here's why:

STAY CONNECTED
• Conveniently send and receive SMS messages from your computer (requires Android)
• Reply to messages from many popular apps including WhatsApp, Kik, and Facebook Messenger (requires Android)
• Easily share links and files between your devices, or with friends

NEVER MISS A NOTIFICATION
• See all of your phone's notifications on your computer, including phone calls (requires Android)
• Dismiss a notification on your computer and it goes away on your phone too
• Use Pushbullet Channels to subscribe to timely notifications about things you care about

SAVE TIME
• Text from your computer using your keyboard instead of grabbing your phone
• The easiest way to get a link or file onto your phone to open or share
• Deal with notifications on your computer as they arrive

"Pushbullet Is a Fantastic App Every Phone Should Have" - Gizmodo

"TNW’s Apps of the Year: PushBullet for Android" - TNW

★ Secure: Protect your notifications and SMS with end-to-end encryption
★ Used by millions of people and counting
★ Translated into over a dozen languages by an awesome group of our own users

See all the places Pushbullet is available: https://www.pushbullet.com/apps "

[via: http://www.wired.com/2016/08/attention-poor-students-chromebooks-get-awesome/ ]
android  chrome  extensions  messaging  texting 
august 2016 by robertogreco
Walled Gardens & Escape Routes | Kneeling Bus
"Slack and Snapchat are two of the platforms that best embody the current technological moment, the fastest recent gainers in Silicon Valley’s constant campaign to build apps we put on our home screens and not only use constantly but freely give our locations, identities, relationships, and precious attention. One of those products is for work and one is for play; both reflect values and aesthetics that, if not new, at least differ in clear ways from those of email, Facebook, and Twitter—the avatars of comparable moments in the recent past.

Recently I compared Twitter to a shrinking city—slowly bleeding users and struggling to produce revenue but a kind of home to many, infrastructure worth preserving, a commons. Now that Pokemon Go has mapped the digital universe onto meatspace more literally, I’ll follow suit and extend that same “city” metaphor to the rest of the internet.

I’m kidding about the Pokemon part (only not really), but the internet has nearly completed one major stage of its life, evolving from a mechanism for sharing webpages between computers into a series of variously porous platforms that are owned or about to be owned by massive companies who have divided up the available digital real estate and found (or failed to find) distinct revenue-generating schemes within each platform’s confines, optimizing life inside to extract revenue (or failing to do so). The app is a manifestation of this maturing structure, each app a gateway to one of these walled gardens and a point of contact with a single company’s business model—far from the messy chaos of the earlier web. So much urban space has been similarly carved up.

If Twitter is a shrinking city, then Slack or Snapchat are exploding fringe suburbs at the height of a housing bubble, laying miles of cul-de-sac and water pipe in advance of the frantic growth that will soon fill in all the space. The problem with my spatial metaphor here is that neither Slack nor Snapchat feels like a “city” in its structure, while Twitter and Facebook do by comparison. I never thought I’d say this, but Twitter and Instagram are legible (if decentralized): follower counts, likes, or retweets signal a loosely quantifiable importance, the linear feed is easy enough to follow, and everything is basically open by default (private accounts go against the grain of Twitter). Traditional social media by now has become a set of tools for attaining a global if personally-tailored perspective on current events and culture.

Slack and Snapchat are quite different, streams of ephemeral and illegible content. Both intentionally restrict your perspective to the immediate here and now. We don’t navigate them so much as we surf them. They’re less rationally-organized, mapped cities than the postmodern spaces that fascinated Frederic Jameson and Reyner Banham: Bonaventure Hotels or freeway cloverleafs, with their own semantic systems—Deleuzian smooth space. Nobody knows one’s position within these universes, just the context their immediate environment affords. Facebook, by comparison, feels like a high modernist panopticon where everyone sees and knows a bit too much.

Like cities, digital platforms have populations that ebb and flow. The history of urbanization is a story of slow, large-scale, irreversible migrations. It’s hard to relocate human settlements. The redistributions of the digital era happen more rapidly but are less absolute: If you have 16 waking hours of daily attention to give, you don’t need to shift it all from Facebook to Snapchat but whatever you do shift can move instantly.

The forces that propel migrations from city to city to suburb and back to city were frequently economic (if not political). Most apps and websites cost nothing to inhabit and yield little economic opportunity for their users. If large groups are not abandoning Twitter or Facebook for anything to do with money, what are they looking for?"



"If we’ve learned anything from recent technology, we can expect Slack and Snapchat to reveal their own serious flaws over time as users accumulate, behaviors solidify, and opportunists learn to exploit their structure. Right now most of the world is still trying to understand what they are. When the time comes—and hopefully we’ll recognize it early enough—we can break camp and go looking for our next temporary outpost."
walledgadens  web  online  internet  2016  snapchat  slack  darknet  darkweb  instagram  twitter  legibility  drewaustin  fredericjameon  reynerbanham  email  venkateshrao  benbashe  identity  communication  openweb  facebook  texting  sms  flowlaminar 
july 2016 by robertogreco
Telegram Bot API
"This API allows you to connect bots to our system. Telegram Bots are special accounts that do not require an additional phone number to set up. These accounts serve as an interface for code running somewhere on your server.

To use this, you don't need to know anything about how our MTProto encryption protocol works — our intermediary server will handle all encryption and communication with the Telegram API for you. You communicate with this server via a simple HTTPS-interface that offers a simplified version of the Telegram API."

[See also: https://telegram.org/blog/bot-revolution ]
telegram  bots  api  chat  texting 
march 2016 by robertogreco
Why I Believe in Text — Thoughts on Media — Medium
"The next step is to have publishing and blogging platforms introduce “medium form” structures. Formats like Medium’s responses help you get your point across in faster and more lightweight manner. There has yet to be a widely adopted writing format that is medium form, under 2500 characters, can be read under 5 minutes, and designed with constraints for brevity. I see great potential for fast, medium-length, text sharing on the web. The format can be written in an abstract form where the user is constrained by a character limit under 2500 (approximately three paragraphs). Constraints in writing structure can breed innovation and concision. It also solves the blank canvas problem where people are intimidated by a never ending blank text editor.

Gone are the days of 10 minute long reads like http://longform.org/. People are producing and consuming content in shorter, quippier, digestable ways (listicles, Buzzfeed, Twitter, theSkimm etc). As a writer, I find this paradigm shift towards short form text both fascinating and scary. The scroll can be your friend when you write long prose (Source: Michael Sippey). Now people just stop scrolling when your content doesn’t catch their attention in the first 30 seconds.

The market for text is larger than ever

People are still reading and producing text more than ever. Facebook, Messenger, Whatsapp, and iMessage indicate that the demand for text in messaging and commenting is exponentially increasing. People are just writing and consuming text in different ways.

For a social network to cater to as many people’s needs as possible it needs to provide a spectrum of sharing as diagramed above. No one sharing format can perfectly capture one person’s identity or needs. There is an amalgamation of personas within social networks. Snapchat is for fast, casual sharing in real time; Instagram is for beautiful images + text to capture your best moments; Notes and Medium are for deeper and richer storytelling when you want to get your points across. For a healthy sharing ecosystem you need a wide spectrum of sharing from lightweight to heavyweight richer storytelling.

Christiana and I broke down the sharing ecosystem by content types and depth of expression. Depth of expression is how much emotional content you can convey in one post. As you progress to the right of the spectrum the content format becomes more meaningful and deeper in expression due to a combination of text and multimedia stories. When I see a singular check-in or Snapchat, I get a glimmer of a person. When I read a note or Medium post, I feel connected to that person and know how they think.

The future of writing is going to be Text+

Text’s linguistic sentence structure adds unique organization to other media. When it comes down to telling a story in visual, video, or written form it is all about flow and organization. The ability to communicate with simple words to complex sentence structures to paragraphs offer an unique advantage for text to be a flexible and modular media that organizes photos and videos into a multimedia story.
Text is the most flexible communication technology. Pictures may be worth a thousand words, when there’s a picture to match what you’re trying to say.
— Always Bet on Text [https://graydon2.dreamwidth.org/193447.html ]

The future of text is going to be text+ (text + multimedia e.g. photos, videos, gifs, podcasts etc). In a mobile first world coupled with our shrinking attention span, readers and users want text+ for a faster, more immersive, gratifying consumption experience. Multimedia stories are the future of text. For rich storytelling to have the fast consumption of videos and it photos, it also needs to be interwoven with the depth and organization of text. It’s not going to be enough for Medium to be just text + photos. The Atatvist Mag does a great job embedding rich media into longform content. Now anyone can generate Pulitzer-winning content on par with “Snowfall”, which is powerful. The Atavist is democratizing high brow publishing to the masses. You don’t need programmers or photo editors anymore to produce high quality long form content. Publishing platforms like Facebook Notes, Medium, and the Atavist empower anyone to generate publisher-par content.

Text Conveys Emotional Depth

I question a world and system that overweighs “fast food consumption” over “slow food consumption”. Text is slow food because it takes longer to produce and consume. Like fast food, fast consumption fills you up fast but doesn’t do much for you. In a world where we measure user satisfaction and trust, we neglect the very basic metric for “connectedness” between users. NPS scores mean nothing if your users don’t feel connected to each other. I want to see companies adopt a metric for “connectedness” measuring how a reader feels towards the writer after reading a story. We should measure how you feel after reading a post. Did it make you feel more connected to the writer? Was the 1 minute you spent reading quality time? How does 1 minute of cat video trade off with 1 minute of reading?

Most importantly, text conveys a certain emotional depth that is not possible in photos and videos. People write during heightened states in their life like when Sheryl Sandberg wrote about losing her husband (I broke down reading her beautiful and poignant post) or when Mark Zuckerberg wrote about the miscarriages he and his wife Priscilla experienced before Max was born (very few people talked publicly about the pain of miscarriages until Mark’s text post). Writing helps us share our pain and heal together by connecting others to us through shared humanity. Through writing we find out that we are not as alone as we thought about our hardships. Writing is a conveyor of vulnerability and brings people together.

You can get to know someone through their writing. Writing makes me feel like I know someone like katie zhu before meeting her. From reading Katie’s Medium posts, I felt like I knew her and skipped the small talk when we met in person. We talked about everything from our shared love for writing to love-hate relationship with SF to internet ethics to cognitive diversity. We started on what would have been a fourth or fifth conversation level all thanks to me reading her writing. Writing connects people because it provides a deeper understanding of someone’s psyche, their beliefs, and their values. And that is a powerful thing in a world with so many disparate beliefs and divisiveness in political and religious factions. Writing has the ability to help you understand the other side’s opinion and dismount hidden biases.

Your product is only as good as the amalgamation of the people who use it. Content changes on the web but products that build deeper, meaningful connections between people will be lasting.

Let’s not get caught up in a “fast food consumption” world and forget that the internet can also be place for permanent, deep, and meaningful expressions. And this is why I believe in text. Text is not over yet, it’s just the beginning."
boren  writing  text  web  digital  via:tealtan  2015  slow  reading  slowreading  howweread  howwewrite  communication  socialmedia  atavist  longform  mediumform  snowfall  christinachae  twitter  theskimmm  buzzfeed  michaelsippy  slate  theawl  text+  theoffing  theatlantic  alwaysbetontext  sms  texting  snapchat  connectedness  emotions  storytelling  instagram  medium  facebook  internet  online  photography  video  toddvanderwerff  messaging  chat  multiliteracies 
december 2015 by robertogreco
These students learn through text message instead of textbook - Home | Spark with Nora Young | CBC Radio
"Eneza Education is a for-profit company that offers educational tools to students in Kenya through text message.  In a country (and continent) where cellphone penetration is high but internet access is low, they offer a virtual tutor that students can access through a low cost mobile phone. 

Toni Maraviglia is the co-founder & CEO of Eneza Education. She talks to Nora about the 500,000 students already taking courses with Eneza."
texts  texting  kenya  education  sms  eneza  mobile  phones  cellphones  tonimaraviglia 
december 2015 by robertogreco
OMG! In Text Messages, Punctuation Conveys Meaning - Pacific Standard
"The Oxford English Dictionary's recent announced that its 2015 "word" of the year is an emoji confirmed that texting is indeed creating a whole new ... not language, exactly, but certainly a distinctive dialect. This extremely abbreviated means of expression clearly requires shortcuts: symbols, either new or re-purposed, that convey the sender's meaning or intention.

A Binghamton University research team has apparently identified one such indicator: Whether or not you put a period at the end of a reply.

In the journal Computers in Human Behavior, researchers led by psychologist Celia Klin report that college students perceive text messages that end with a period to be less sincere than ones that do not.

That sincerely baffles me.

The study featured 126 undergraduates, who read a series of exchanges that appeared as either text messages or handwritten notes. The "text messages" were printed on pictures of cell phones; the "handwritten notes" were printed on pictures of loose-leaf paper.

"Punctuation is one of the cues used by senders, and understood by receivers, to convey pragmatic and social information."

The experimental exchanges featured an invitation that was phrased as a question ("Dave gave me his extra tickets. Wanna come?"), followed by a one-word response such as "Yeah" or "Sure." For each of the 16 exchanges, participants either read a version in which the response ended with a period, or an alternate version in which it was not punctuated.

After reading each exchange, participants rated the sincerity of the receiver's response on a scale of one to seven.

The result: Text messages that ended with a period were rated less sincere than those that did not. This was not true of handwritten notes. "These results indicate that punctuation influenced the perceived meaning of the text messages," the researchers write.

Now, communicating effectively when you can't hear a person's tone of voice, see their facial expression, or note the nuances contained in longer written messages can be tricky; it was inevitable that indicators of emotion would evolve into existence. But why this one?

I can only guess that, for some people (the researchers note the size of the effect was "modest"), a sentence ending in a period suggests the other person put at least a little time and effort into composing their reply. If you take time to consider your answer, it opens the possibility of mendacity. In contrast, if you answer spontaneously and informally, the message presumably reflects your instantaneous gut response—which is honest by definition.

Wisely, the researchers do not weigh in on that question. "Our claim is not so much that the period is used to convey a lack of sincerity in text messages," they write, "but that punctuation is one of the cues used by senders, and understood by receivers, to convey pragmatic and social information."

"Our data indicate that people are able to include in their texts the types of non-verbal cues that are present in face-to-face conversation."

So, next time you are texting, pay attention to the punctuation you use, or don't use. Chances are that even small choices convey specific meanings. And if they don't reflect what you're trying to say, the LOL is on you."

[See also: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2015/12/08/study-confirms-that-ending-your-texts-with-a-period-is-terrible/]
texting  punctuation  messaging  periods  language  meaning  mobile  phones  emoji  sincerity  tomjacobs  howwewrite 
november 2015 by robertogreco
Insights: K-HOLE, New York — Insights: K-HOLE, New York — Channel — Walker Art Center
"K-HOLE exists in multiple states at once: it is both a publication and a collective; it is both an artistic practice and a consulting firm; it is both critical and unapologetically earnest. Its five members come from backgrounds as varied as brand strategy, fine art, web development, and fashion, and together they have released a series of fascinating PDF publications modeled upon corporate trend forecasting reports. These documents appropriate the visuals of PowerPoint, stock photography, and advertising and exploit the inherent poetry in the purposefully vague aphorisms of corporate brand-speak. Ultimately, K-HOLE aspires to utilize the language of trend forecasting to discuss sociopolitical topics in depth, exploring the capitalist landscape of advertising and marketing in a critical but un-ironic way.

In the process, the group frequently coins new terms to articulate their ideas, such as “Youth Mode”: a term used to describe the prevalent attitude of youth culture that has been emancipated from any particular generation; the “Brand Anxiety Matrix”: a tool designed to help readers understand their conflicted relationships with the numerous brands that clutter their mental space on a daily basis; and “Normcore”: a term originally used to describe the desire not to differentiate oneself, which has since been mispopularized (by New York magazine) to describe the more specific act of dressing neutrally to avoid standing out. (In 2014, “Normcore” was named a runner-up by Oxford University Press for “Neologism of the Year.”)

Since publishing K-HOLE, the collective has taken on a number of unique projects that reflect the manifold nature of their practice, from a consulting gig with a private equity firm to a collaboration with a fashion label resulting in their own line of deodorant. K-HOLE has been covered by a wide range of publications, including the New York Times, Fast Company, Wired UK, and Mousse.

Part of Insights 2015 Design Lecture Series."

[direct link to video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7GkMPN5f5cQ ]
k-hole  consumption  online  internet  communication  burnout  normcore  legibility  illegibility  simplicity  technology  mobile  phones  smartphones  trends  fashion  art  design  branding  brands  socialmedia  groupchat  texting  oversharing  absence  checkingout  aesthetics  lifestyle  airplanemode  privilege  specialness  generations  marketing  trendspotting  coping  messaging  control  socialcapital  gregfong  denayago  personalbranding  visibility  invisibility  identity  punk  prolasticity  patagonia  patience  anxietymatrix  chaos  order  anxiety  normality  abnormality  youth  millennials  individuality  box1824  hansulrichobrist  alternative  indie  culture  opposition  massindie  williamsburg  simoncastets  digitalnatives  capitalism  mainstream  semiotics  subcultures  isolation  2015  walkerartcenter  maxingout  establishment  difference  89plus  basicness  evasion  blandness  actingbasic  empathy  indifference  eccentricity  blankness  tolerance  rebellion  signalling  status  coolness  aspiration  connections  relationships  presentationofself  understanding  territorialism  sociology  ne 
march 2015 by robertogreco
That Way We’re All Writing Now — The Message — Medium
"[When you(r)…
That moment when…]

This style has been huge for some time now. Do you love it, or hate it?

Me—I’m in! Mind you, I’m a fan of all the betentacled linguistic lifeforms that have emerged from our cambrian explosion online. These days, people write insanely more text than they did before the Internet and mobile phones came along. So the volume of experimentation is correspondingly massive and, for me, delightful. One joy of our age is watching wordplay evolve at the pace of E.coli.

But this trend: What’s going on with it? How does it work? Why do people employ it so frequently?

It turns out there are four big reasons why.

To suss this out, I called up some linguists: Gretchen McCulloch, a who specializes in analyzing netspeak (her Toast essay explaining “the grammar of Doge” is a gorgeous example), and Ben Zimmer, a linguist with Vocabulary.com who writes for the Wall Street Journal. As they pointed out, this style of wordplay initially appeared—like most online memes — on image-boards, Tumblr and Youtube. An early version was the meme “that feel when”; variants morphed into the standalone phrase “that awkward moment when”, which by last year was common enough to appear as a movie title.

But it’s more than just movie titles. This stylistic gambit— “that moment when …”, “the thing where …”, “when you realize …” — is omnipresent now. And that’s because it achieves a few conversational goals:

1) It creates a little puzzle. …

2) It makes your feeling seem universal. …

3) It’s short. …

4) It’s a glimpse of the next big way the Internet is changing language. …

For the first fifteen years of the mainstream Internet, the main way language changed was at the level of the individual word. We invented a lot of ‘textisms’ — short forms like ‘ur’ for “you’re”, LOL-style acronyms, or alphanumeric l33tspe@k. And of course, a lot of words got invented, like “selfie”.

What’s happening now is different. Now we’re messing around with syntax — the structure of sentences, the order in which the various parts go and how they relate to one another. This stuff people are doing with the subordinate clause, it’s pretty sophisticated, and oddly deep. We’re not just inventing catchy new words. We’re mucking around with what makes a sentence a sentence.

“Playing with syntax seems to be the broad meta trend behind a whole bunch of stuff that’s going on these days,” McCulloch tells me. And it goes beyond this subordinate-clause trend. Many of the biggest recent language memes were about syntax experimentation, such as the “i’ve lost the ability to can” gambit, or the gnarly elocution of doge, or the “because” meme. (Indeed, Zimmer points out, the American Dialect Society proclaimed “Because” the Word of the Year for 2013, largely because it had been revitalized by this syntax play.)

Why would we be suddenly messing around with syntax? It’s not clear. McCulloch thinks it may be related to a larger trend she’s identified, which she calls “stylized verbal incoherence mirroring emotional incoherence”. Most of these syntax-morphing memes consist of us trying to find clever new ways to express our feelings.

“You want to convey that you’re kind of overwhelmed by your emotions,” she says. “But you don’t want people to think that you’re completely naive about it. So you’re maintaining a certain level of sophistication. You need to stylize your incoherence, so that it’s part of a broader thing people are doing. You don’t just kind of keysmash all over the place. You also want to be witty while you’re doing it.

“You get more attention online if you’re witty, and people actually engage with you if you’re witty about your feelings.”

On the other hand, if you really don’t like this trend, there is—as it happens —an image-meme for your feelings, too. Better yet, it’s a complete sentence!"
clivethompson  2015  language  internet  memes  syntax  linguistics  writing  howwewrite  gretchenmcculloch  doge  grammar  text  texting  play  communication  brevity  universality  belonging  humor  emotions  benzimmer  wordplay  words  sentences  that 
march 2015 by robertogreco
Futures of text ["A survey of all the current innovation in text as a medium"] | Whoops by Jonathan Libov
"Text is the most socially useful communication technology. It works well in 1:1, 1:N, and M:N modes. It can be indexed and searched efficiently, even by hand. It can be translated. It can be produced and consumed at variable speeds. It is asynchronous. It can be compared, diffed, clustered, corrected, summarized and filtered algorithmically. It permits multiparty editing. It permits branching conversations, lurking, annotation, quoting, reviewing, summarizing, structured responses, exegesis, even fan fic. The breadth, scale and depth of ways people use text is unmatched by anything."



"Messaging is the only interface in which the machine communicates with you much the same as the way you communicate with it. If some of the trends outlined in this post pervade, it would mark a qualitative shift in how we interact with computers. Whereas computer interaction to date has largely been about discrete, deliberate events — typing in the command line, clicking on files, clicking on hyperlinks, tapping on icons — a shift to messaging- or conversational-based UI's and implicit hyperlinks would make computer interaction far more fluid and natural.

What's more, messaging AI benefits from an obvious feedback loop: The more we interact with bots and messaging UI's, the better it'll get. That's perhaps true for GUI as well, but to a far lesser degree. Messaging AI may get better at a rate we've never seen in the GUI world. Hold on tight."

[via: https://twitter.com/equartey/status/570340911227367424
https://twitter.com/hautepop/status/570895976296087552
https://twitter.com/bruces/status/572384468230676480
https://twitter.com/TheRealFuture/status/572502116490747905 ]
text  texting  chat  sms  messaging  ui  communication  interface  design  gui  lark  quicktype  sinaweibo  alipay  qq  wechat  qqhousekeeper  weidan  koudai  facebook  facebookmessenger  talkto  applications  mobile  luka  chatgrape  slack  commandline  bustime  jonathanlibov 
march 2015 by robertogreco
20. You Will Use Your Phone…for Talking? — Why 2015 Won’t Suck — Medium
"As Ukraine descended into war last spring, people on both sides of the border turned to Zello, an app that transforms smartphones into walkie-talkies, to stay up to date on the rapidly shifting fighting. “People were using it to warn about things like air strikes,” says the app’s co-founder, Alexey Gavrilov, adding that protesters also used Zello to organize protests. Ukraine wasn’t the only conflict zone to pick up on the app: Demonstrators in Veneuzela, Turkey, and Thailand also turned to it to organize protests.

As Zello’s success shows, this year many people decided to ditch texting for a throwback method of personal communication — talking. There’s a whole slew of startups looking to disrupt your Gchats: Hubbub, AudioTweet, and CloudTalk, to name a few. Even Facebook Messenger rolled out a sound-recording message option. And in other parts of the world, voice messages caught on this summer: Bubbly, a voice-based blogging service popular in Asia, revealed it already had 40 million users during the course of its recent $39 million sale.

Zello co-founder Bill Moore has an explanation for the shift. He says our increasingly tech-saturated culture is getting frustrated with the rigidity of text — not to mention its ubiquity. “Voice is a way of communicating that’s authentically human. So many people are isolated now, spending a lot of time on the internet,” Moore says. “We’re starting to see a rejection of old forms of [text-based] communication because of that.”

The generation raised on smartphones (and J.Law and 4chan and Edward Snowden and Sony hacks) is also starting to think about the implications of where their content goes. “We’re seeing a shift toward privacy and anonymity,” Moore says. If you’re anonymous, leaked information is less damaging because it can’t be traced to your real persona. So more people are moving in the direction of aliases — think Whisper and Secret, apps that allow people to go undercover even for casual conversation. “One of the ways you can ensure privacy is to communicate without any identification,” Moore says. “If you’re anonymous, it gives people the freedom to say things they wouldn’t otherwise.”

A shift from text to voice might also help solve the obvious problem with the trend toward anonymity: trolls. “It erases a barrier,” says Moore. “You say stuff when you’re removed in text that you would never say face to face. It helps moderate bad behavior. There’s an increased sense of ethics.”

After all, no matter how many fancy tech tools we’ve created, or how addicted we may be to texting, talking never really went out of fashion. “That’s how we’re created to communicate,” Moore says. “A toddler can listen long before it can type.”"
talking  voice  mobile  phones  communication  2015  loisprchley  zello  billmoore  hubbub  texting  audiotweet  cloudtalk  sound  audio  voicemessages  bubbly  alexeygavrilov 
january 2015 by robertogreco
Wire
"It’s beautiful.
Visually rich, clean, and elegant, Wire delivers a communication experience like no other. Write, talk, share pictures, music and video with people on phones, tablets and desktops — Wire is thoughtfully designed. For your every thought.

It’s pure.
With Wire you can easily move from messages and pictures to HD voice. Wire’s pristine audio quality makes it feel as if the people you are speaking to are right there with you.

It’s happening.
Photos on Wire display beautifully inline, SoundCloud music and YouTube videos blend nicely with text and pictures. So you can share your nicest moments, in the moment.

It’s everywhere.
Phone, desktop or tablet — Wire goes where you go. Wire for browsers will be available soon.

It’s on.
Wire is perfect for staying connected with any group. Create a conversation, name it as you wish, and add people — your groups will be taking off whether they’re about work, family or fun. Oh, and Wire groups are full democracy."

[via: http://techcrunch.com/2014/12/02/skype-co-founder-backs-wire-a-new-communications-app-launching-today-on-ios-android-and-mac/ ]
communication  applications  android  iphone  ios  skype  qik  janusfriis  chat  texting  telephony  conversation  groupchat  2014  multimedia  voice  slack  email  ios8  osx  mac  messaging 
december 2014 by robertogreco
Brave New Phone Call — Backchannel — Medium
"Ray Ozzie’s new app Talko hopes to give people their voices back"



"While Talko offers a number of compelling features, one in particular is destined for controversy: it stores all conversations by default. Unless you are being bugged by the FBI, the spoken words of a phone call have always disappeared as soon as the sound subsided. In that sense, traditional telephony is more ephemeral than Snapchat. But Talko calls are persistently available, like email or texts."
talko  communication  phones  email  chat  applications  ios  rayozzie  2014  conversation  texting  telephony  voicemail  slack 
december 2014 by robertogreco
LINE : Free Calls & Messages
"Free Messaging Whenever, Wherever

Exchange free instant messages with friends whenever and wherever with one-on-one and group chats. LINE is available on all smartphone devices (iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, Nokia) and even on your PC.

Free Voice & Video Calls
Real-time voice and video calls with friends are free with LINE. Don't wait to hear your loved ones' voices or see their smiling faces. Call NOW! Currently available on iPhone, Android, WindowsPhone(Voice), BlackBerry(Voice) and PC(Windows/MacOS).

LINE Stickers
More fun and expressive chats with over 10,000 stickers and emoticons, you can express a wider range of emotions. Have more fun with LINE stickers. Visit the Sticker Shop to find original LINE and world-famous character stickers.

From photo & video sharing to voice messages
LINE lets you share photos, videos, voice messages, contacts and location information easily with your friends.

Get the latest news and special coupons for popular artists and brands.
Add Official Accounts of your favorite artists, celebrities, brands and TV shows as a friend to get exclusive news and coupons only available on LINE."
mobile  texting  messaging  line  applications  ios  iphone  android  windowsphone  blackberry  mac  osx  pc  japan  news 
september 2014 by robertogreco
The Period, Our Simplest Punctuation Mark, Has Become a Sign of Anger | New Republic
"“In the world of texting and IMing … the default is to end just by stopping, with no punctuation mark at all,” Liberman wrote me. “In that situation, choosing to add a period also adds meaning because the reader(s) need to figure out why you did it. And what they infer, plausibly enough, is something like ‘This is final, this is the end of the discussion or at least the end of what I have to contribute to it.’”

It’s a remarkable innovation. The period was one of the first punctuation marks to enter written language as a way to indicate a pause, back when writing was used primarily as a record of (and script for) speech. Over time, as the written word gained autonomy from the spoken word, punctuation became a way to structure a text according to its own unique hierarchy and logic. While punctuation could still be used to create or suggest the rhythms of speech, only the exclamation point and question mark indicated anything like what an orator would call “tone.”"



"It's not just the period. Nearly everyone has struggled to figure out whether or not a received message is sarcastic. So people began using exclamation points almost as sincerity markers: “I really mean the sentence I just concluded!” (This is especially true of exclamation points used in sequence: “Are you being sarcastic?” “No!!!!!”) And as problems of tone kept arising on text and instant message, people turned to other punctuation marks on their keyboards rather than inventing new ones.2 The question mark has similarly outgrown its traditional purpose. I notice it more and more as a way to temper straightforward statements that might otherwise seem cocky, as in “I’m pretty sure he likes me?” The ellipsis, as Slate noted, has come to serve a whole range of purposes. I often see people using it as a passive-aggressive alternative to the period’s outright hostility—an invitation to the offender to guess at his mistake and remedy it. (“No.” shuts down the conversation; “No…” allows it to continue.)

Medial punctuation, like the comma and parentheses, has yet to take on emotional significance (at least as far as I've observed). And these newfangled, emotional uses of terminal punctuation haven't crossed over into more traditional, thoughtful writing. (I have used the period throughout this story, and I’m in a perfectly pleasant mood.) Perhaps one day it will, though, and our descendants will wonder why everyone used to be so angry. For posterity's sake, then, let my author bio be clear:

Ben Crair is a story editor at The New Republic!"
periods  punctuation  texting  language  grammar  emotion  bencrair  2013 
december 2013 by robertogreco
RSA - The App Generation: identity, intimacy and imagination in the digital era
"Professor Howard Gardner explores the challenges facing today's young people as they navigate three vital areas of adolescent life - identity, intimacy and imagination - in a digital world. How can we ensure that new technologies act as a springboard to greater creativity and higher aspiration?"

[Direct link to video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTqY-a2kvk8 ]
howardgardner  education  generations  digital  digitalage  2013  creativity  imagination  writing  technology  identity  intimacy  texting  openstudioproject  lcproject  gettinglost  vulnerability  visual  text  graphicarts  empathy  constraints  freedom 
november 2013 by robertogreco
Text speak does not affect children's use of grammar: study - Telegraph
"Children who use ‘text speak’ when sending messages on their mobile phones do not have a poor grasp of grammar, a study has shown."
2012  grammar  writing  language  kids  children  teens  texting  textspeak  from delicious
september 2012 by robertogreco
BUS YOUR OWN TRAY — On the Virtue of Brevity in Email
"Long emails are, more frequently than not, the worst. When you send someone an email, you make a demand on their time. If you use more words than necessary, you waste their time. Sure we’re talking maybe a fraction of a minute, but given the number of emails the average person sends in a day those fractions add up pretty quick.

This conflicts with an older style of correspondence that associated pleasantries with tact. Tactful emails now are efficient, and pleasantries are a waste. People accustomed to pleasantries see their absence as rude, or a sign of being cross. They infer a tone that isn’t there, while people accustomed to brevity know how difficult it can be to ascertain tone from an email.

The efficient emailer often has to conform to the old style to assuage hurt feelings. This is just as terrible as the other thing, because it requires the sender to waste time and energy creating more words than necessary…"
etiquette  norms  texting  twitter  change  cultureshifts  brevity  2012  adamlisagor  siri  communication  email  ericspiegelman  from delicious
july 2012 by robertogreco
Some teens aren't liking Facebook as much as older users - latimes.com
"For these youngsters the social networking giant's novelty has worn off. They are checking out new mobile apps, hanging out on Tumblr and Twitter, and sending plain-old text messages from their phones."
via:kissane  parents  adolescents  teens  blogging  texting  trends  socialnetworks  socialnetworking  2012  tumblr  twitter  facebook  from delicious
june 2012 by robertogreco
Christian Groß — SMS to Paper Airplanes
"Purpose, I tried to visualize the text message communication between my girlfriend and myself. Since we are in a long distance relationship and living in two different countries text messages are often the easiest way to communicate. The challenge was to find a medium, which is variable and able to visualize the information of the text messages, but at the same time allows to keep the content private. For me the paper airplane was the perfect image for this scenario, because the text messages as well as travelling by plane are the most common ways for us to cover the distance.

The text messages were filtered and analyzed using PROCESSING. The sender was encoded by the direction of the paper airplane, the length of the message with its size and the amount of positive emotional words with the amounts of folds. Additionally the paper airplanes were divided in two types depending on the length of their text…"
art  sms  craft  paper  papernet  via:russelldavies  airplanes  paperairplanes  visualization  christiangross  christianGroß  texting  communication  planes  making  classideas  from delicious
august 2011 by robertogreco
Lost languages as teen cyphertools | Blog | Futurismic
"We’ve talked about social steganography before; for teenagers and other folk restricted to communicating in public and/or monitored virtual spaces, a shared coded language becomes a necessity for the communication of ideas which you don’t want the watchers (be they parents, governments or whatever else) to be able to parse."

"Samuel Herrera, who runs the linguistics laboratory at the Institute of Anthropological Research in Mexico City, found young people in southern Chile producing hip-hop videos and posting them on YouTube using Huilliche, a language on the brink of extinction."

[See also: http://kottke.org/11/07/keeping-language-alive-through-texting AND http://www.mobiledia.com/news/96056.html ]
chile  texting  cyphertools  teens  youth  languages  communication  privacy  2011  extinction  mobile  phones  huilliche  steganography  from delicious
july 2011 by robertogreco
Rude Voice Mail Becomes Viral Ad for Movie Chain - NYTimes.com
"When Mr. League and his wife, Karrie, opened the first Alamo Drafthouse location in Austin in 1997, they were not motivated by love of cinema alone.<br />
<br />
“Before we opened, we thought about all the things we hated about the movie-going experience,” Mr. League said.<br />
<br />
The theaters do not show advertising before movies, because “our stance is you’ve paid for this movie and that entitles you to a commercial-free experience,” Mr. League said.<br />
<br />
And because the Leagues had been annoyed by exorbitant concessions and unruly children, the Alamo has a full menu of reasonably priced food and alcoholic beverages and prohibits children under 6 from all but some G-rated movies and, for any movie, requires those under 18 to be accompanied by an adult.<br />
<br />
Most theaters run announcements to refrain from talking or using cellphones, of course, but such requests are ignored — or worse."
alamodrafthouse  timleague  friends  texting  mobile  phones  film  theaters  from delicious
june 2011 by robertogreco
Parent-child relationships in the Facebook, cellphone and Skype era - latimes.com
"…not so long ago parents drove a teenager to campus, said tearful goodbye & returned home to wait week or so for phone call from dorm. Mom or Dad, in turn, might write letters…

But going to college these days means never having to say goodbye, thanks to near-saturation of cellphones, email, instant messaging, texting, Facebook and Skype. Researchers are looking at how new technology may be delaying the point at which college-bound students truly become independent from their parents, & how phenomena such as the introduction of unlimited calling plans have changed the nature of parent-child relationships, & not always for the better."

[Anyone looking into comparisons w/ countries where university students mostly live at home? This isn't new to them. There's something to be said about maintaining strong family ties. Many implications here regarding depression, over-emphasis of the individual, etc. Helicopter parents exist for reasons other than technology.] 

[Related article here: http://articles.latimes.com/2011/mar/12/home/la-hm-parent-anxiety-20110312 ]
families  parenting  connectivity  helicopterparents  trends  universities  colleges  adulthood  society  sherryturkle  adolescence  cellphones  mobile  phones  communication  skype  texting  im  facebook  solitude  barbarahofer  helicopterparenting  from delicious
june 2011 by robertogreco
The Really Smart Phone - WSJ.com
"Researchers are harvesting a wealth of intimate detail from our cellphone data, uncovering the hidden patterns of our social lives, travels, risk of disease—even our political views."
mobile  phones  cellphones  data  statistics  predictablity  health  predictions  research  2011  politics  policy  movement  travel  behavior  society  psychology  socialcontagion  robertleehotz  mit  alexpentland  humandynamiclaboratory  sms  texting  twitter  communication  happiness  smartphones  socialnetworks  from delicious
april 2011 by robertogreco
Less Is More: Using Social Media to Inspire Concise Writing - NYTimes.com
"How can online media like Twitter posts, Facebook status updates and text messages be harnessed to inspire and guide concise writing? In this lesson, students read, respond to and write brief fiction and nonfiction stories, and reflect on the benefits and drawbacks of “writing short.”"

[Related: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/20/opinion/20selsberg.html AND http://www.pdscompasspoint.com/?p=4466 ]
writing  literature  twitter  facebook  brevity  classideas  fiction  stories  storytelling  socialmedia  summary  texting  constraints  from delicious
april 2011 by robertogreco
Don’t Call Me, I Won’t Call You - NYTimes.com
"Phone calls are rude. Intrusive. Awkward. “Thank you for noticing something that millions of people have failed to notice since the invention of the telephone until just now,” Judith Martin, a k a Miss Manners, said by way of opening our phone conversation. “I’ve been hammering away at this for decades. The telephone has a very rude propensity to interrupt people.”

Though the beast has been somewhat tamed by voice mail and caller ID, the phone caller still insists, Ms. Martin explained, “that we should drop whatever we’re doing and listen to me.”"
email  culture  society  communication  voicemail  phones  etiquette  change  2011  pamelapaul  phonecalls  sms  texting  from delicious
march 2011 by robertogreco
Learning from my children… and Radiohead – confused of calcutta
"During their lifetimes I have seen the fat TV disappear completely, the CD become a shiny plastic relic to place in the same category as “desktops”,  the mobile phone become a prosthetic device, and the laptop a fashion accessory. Their facility with sound and picture and video, the ease with which they navigate cyberspace, the way they put all this to use and create value from it….. all reasons to make a dad’s heart sing. Of course I’ve had to learn about how to help them combat fraud, how to avoid going to the wrong sites, how to protect their privacy. But largely they’re the ones doing the learning and the teaching, not me.

Except for one or two things. Many children seem to believe that printers get cartridges replaced and paper restocked the same way clothes fly off floors, get washed and ironed and turn up in their bedroom wardrobes. Something needs to be done about this. But that’s a different post."
teaching  learning  parenting  jprangaswami  children  technology  change  2011  mobilephones  mobile  communication  texting  messaging  radiohead  music  internet  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
Don'ts: walking while texting
"If you run into me on the sidewalk while you are heads-down texting, emailing, IMing, reading, sexting, Angry Birdsing, or whatever elseing on your mobile device, I get to slap that fucking thing out of your hands a la Alex Rodriguez slapping the ball out of Bronson Arroyo's glove in game six of the 2004 American League Championship Series, except way less milquetoasty. And you do the same for me, ok?

Addendum: If you're heads-down texting on your phone accompanying a young child in a crosswalk with lots of traffic turning through it, I get to slap the phone out of your hands, punch you in the face, and take your child away from you forever. Seriously, what the fuck is wrong with you people?"
jasonkottke  kottke  etiquette  attention  mobilephones  mobile  parenting  texting  walking  pedestrians  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
Give a Minute!
"Give a Minute is a new kind of public dialogue. It only takes a minute to think about improving your city, but your ideas can make a world of difference. "Give a Minute" is an opportunity for you to think out loud; address old problems with fresh thinking; and to enter into dialogue with change-making community leaders. Soon, you’ll also be able to link up with others who have similar ideas and work on making your city an even better place. This initiative is happening in multiple cities: Chicago Memphis, New York, San Jose"
civicengagement  change  crowdsourcing  creativity  giveaminute  classideas  civics  community  collaboration  activism  behavior  environment  agency  technology  government  society  public  mobile  localism  local  csl  texting  chicago  ideas  memphis  nyc  sanjose  from delicious
november 2010 by robertogreco
The Public Square Goes Mobile - NYTimes.com
"Give a Minute launched with the question, “Hey Chicago, what would encourage you to walk, bike or take CTA more often?” Citizens, who are learning about it from billboards, ads on the L and in the local paper, are texting their ideas and posting them to the Give a Minute Web site. You can look here to find the responses texted so far (1,000 in the first two weeks), which range from “lower CTA fares” to “organized walking groups going roughly the same route with similar interests” to “play classical music on train system” to “I need to bring my daughter with me, so the streets need to be kid-safe.”

“We’re just culling through all the different ideas that run from the specific to the hilarious to the utopian,” says Barton. “But one thing that does seem clear is that they are far more diverse and often smaller scale, and actionable on different scales including individual, neighborhood and government.”"
civicengagement  change  crowdsourcing  creativity  giveaminute  classideas  civics  community  collaboration  activism  behavior  environment  agency  technology  government  society  public  mobile  localism  local  csl  texting  chicago  sanjose  nyc  memphis  from delicious
november 2010 by robertogreco
Rosecrans Baldwin, Novelist - Writers on Process
“A ton of writers I know, and I include myself in that category, if you see them at a party texting someone, they are actually not texting. They are saving a piece of overheard conversation that they want to keep. Or they are noting down an idea.”
rosecransbaldwin  writing  notetaking  via:robinsloan  ideas  howwework  classideas  srg  process  memory  texting  from delicious
august 2010 by robertogreco
Clive Thompson on the Death of the Phone Call | Magazine
"The telephone, in other words, doesn’t provide any information about status, so we are constantly interrupting one another. The other tools at our disposal are more polite. Instant messaging lets us detect whether our friends are busy without our bugging them, and texting lets us ping one another asynchronously. (Plus, we can spend more time thinking about what we want to say.) For all the hue and cry about becoming an “always on” society, we’re actually moving away from the demand that everyone be available immediately.

In fact, the newfangled media that’s currently supplanting the phone call might be the only thing that helps preserve it. Most people I know coordinate important calls in advance using email, text messaging, or chat (r u busy?). An unscheduled call that rings on my phone fails the conversational Turing test: It’s almost certainly junk, so I ignore it. (Unless it’s you, Mom!)"
mobile  clivethompson  cellphones  calls  digitalculture  2010  email  facebook  im  communication  culture  socialmedia  trends  twitter  texting  technology  phones 
july 2010 by robertogreco
YouTube - David Crystal - Texts and Tweets: myths and realities
"Professor David Crystal, one of the world's leading linguistic experts, challenges the myth that new communication technologies are destroying language"

[via: http://www.minddump.org/the-best-texters-tend-to-be-the-best-spellers via: http://twitter.com/TeachPaperless/status/17732152590 ]
davidcrystal  linguistics  twitter  texting  language  english  myth  communication  writing  reading  tcsnmy  chat  sms 
july 2010 by robertogreco
How Should Schools Handle Cyberbullying? - NYTimes.com
"Schools these days are confronted w/ complex questions on whether & how to deal w/ cyberbullying, an imprecise label for online activities ranging from barrages of teasing texts to sexually harassing group sites...
bullying  middleschool  education  parenting  teaching  discipline  learning  online  internet  texting  tcsnmy  schools  administration  cyberbullying 
july 2010 by robertogreco
Jack Dorsey: The 3 Keys to Twitter's Success :: Videos :: The 99 Percent
"Jack Dorsey outlines three core takeaways from his experiences building and launching Twitter – and more recently – Square, a simple payment utility. 1) Draw: get your idea out of your head and share it, 2) Luck: assess when the time (and the market) is right to execute your idea, 3) Iterate: take in the feedback, be a rigorous editor, and refine your idea."
creativity  drawing  entrepreneurship  howto  inspiration  process  success  luck  iteration  maps  mapping  twitter  texting  sms  dispatch  information  socialmedia  jackdorsey  tcsnmy  glvo  sharing  criticism  constructivecriticism  rapidprototyping  rapid  prototyping  failure 
may 2010 by robertogreco
Drilling Down - Sharing Sales Tips in a Smaller Circle - NYTimes.com
"The study found that while girls were alert to sales on favorite brands, they tended to share this information with a small circle of intimates, through phone calls or text messages, rather than broadcasting it to the world at large via Facebook. “They have the capacity to broadcast at their fingertips, but they don’t do it,” said Marian Salzman, the firm’s president."
girls  communication  teens  broadcasting  facebook  texting  networks  phonecalls  smallcirclesofintimates 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Clive Thompson to Texters: Park the Car, Take the Bus | Magazine
"We should change our focus to the other side of the equation & curtail not the texting but the driving. This may sound a bit facetious, but I’m serious. When we worry about driving & texting, we assume that the most important thing the person is doing is piloting the car. But what if the most important thing they’re doing is texting? How do we free them up so they can text without needing to worry about driving?
texting  driving  safety  transportation  us  japan  europe  future  focus  multitasking  clivethompson 
february 2010 by robertogreco
UK Study Links Technology and Strong Writing Skills » Spotlight
"New evidence shows that blogs, texting can help strengthen students’ core literacy skills. ... The report found that kids who blog or contribute to a social networking sites are more likely to enjoy writing—and are more prolific—than those who do not have a blog or contribute to social networking sites. These students also believe themselves to be good writers.
blogs  texting  blogging  tcsnmy  writing  grammar  learning  online  socialnetworking  literacy 
december 2009 by robertogreco
Clive Thompson on the New Literacy
""I think we're in the midst of a literacy revolution the likes of which we haven't seen since Greek civilization"...For Lunsford, technology isn't killing our ability to write. It's reviving it—& pushing our literacy in bold new directions...The fact that students today almost always write for an audience gives them a different sense of what constitutes good writing. In interviews, they defined good prose as something that had an effect on the world. For them, writing is about persuading & organizing & debating, even if it's over something as quotidian as what movie to go see. The Stanford students were almost always less enthusiastic about their in-class writing because it had no audience but the professor: It didn't serve any purpose other than to get them a grade. As for those texting short-forms & smileys defiling serious academic writing? Another myth. When Lunsford examined the work of first-year students, she didn't find a single example of texting speak in an academic paper."

[more here: http://snarkmarket.com/blog/snarkives/books_writing_such/reading_revolutions/ ]
writing  audience  research  teaching  schools  socialmedia  digitalliteracy  communication  clivethompson  21stcenturyskills  education  learning  technology  internet  trends  newliteracies  newliteracy  rhetoric  literacy  digital  blogging  texting  change  newmedia  students  tcsnmy 
august 2009 by robertogreco
Driven to Distraction - In 2003, U.S. Withheld Data Showing Cellphone Driving Risks - Series - NYTimes.com
"That letter said that hands-free headsets did not eliminate the serious accident risk. The reason: a cellphone conversation itself, not just holding the phone, takes drivers’ focus off the road, studies showed.
multitasking  psychology  distraction  attention  driving  texting  mobile  phones  cognition  publichealth  safety 
july 2009 by robertogreco
Texting May Be Taking a Toll on Teenagers - NYTimes.com
"American teenagers sent and received an average of 2,272 text messages per month in the fourth quarter of 2008, according to the Nielsen Company — almost 80 messages a day, more than double the average of a year earlier. ... “Among the jobs of adolescence are to separate from your parents, and to find the peace and quiet to become the person you decide you want to be,” she said. “Texting hits directly at both those jobs.”
teens  parenting  sherryturkle  adolescence  youth  children  texting  mobile  phone  communication  technology 
may 2009 by robertogreco
FrontLine SMS on OLPC XO: Revolution You Can Run With - OLPC News
"By attaching a computer (Linux, Mac, or Windows) to a cell phone with a data cable and installing his (free, open source) software, Frontline SMS, that computer is turned into a messaging hub; sending and receiving text messages via the cell phone to hundreds of contacts."
olpc  xo  hacks  linux  applications  mac  osx  windows  sms  messaging  mobile  phones  server  data  opensource  texting 
april 2009 by robertogreco
Apple issues App Store-wide Emoji take-down order - Ars Technica
"Apple has issued an App Store-wide take-down of all Emoji-enabling iPhone applications. There may be a few reasons for this decision, ranging from the gray area of how developers are switching on Emoji support to possible licensing issues."
emoji  applications  iphone  apple  languages  mobile  sms  texting  ios 
february 2009 by robertogreco
Texting can b gd 4 ur kids - tech - 22 February 2009 - New Scientist
"When they compared the number of textisms used to a separate study of the children's reading ability, they found that those who used more textisms were better readers (British Journal of Developmental Psychology, DOI: 10.1348/026151008X320507).
texting  sms  reading  writing  literacy  learning  children  tcsnmy 
february 2009 by robertogreco
Gmail SMS
"At some point, the virtual phone number could be the same as the GrandCentral number and Gmail could become a centralized communication system, where you can send email messages, SMS, make phone calls, use video chat, share files and archive your entire communication flow."
google  gmail  sms  texting  grandcentral  communication  im  mobile  phones 
december 2008 by robertogreco
Thumbspeak: Books: The New Yorker
"...lists also suggest that texting has accelerated a tendency toward the Englishing of world languages. Under the constraints of the numeric-keypad technology, English has some advantages. The average English word has only five letters; the average Inuit word, for example, has fourteen. English has relatively few characters...rarely uses diacritical marks...is not heavily inflected...But English is also the language of much of the world’s popular culture. Sometimes it is more convenient to use the English term, but often it is the aesthetically preferred term—the cooler expression....And there is what is known as “code-mixing,” in which two languages—one of them invariably English—are conflated in a single expression...So texting has probably done some damage to the planet’s cultural ecology, to lingo-diversity. People are better able to communicate across national borders, but at some cost to variation. "
language  english  texting  global  sms  culture  technology 
october 2008 by robertogreco
textually.org: Text Messaging Makes Your Brain Blank Out
"The ratio communis, a key region of the brain, was malfunctioning. Instead of fluorescing on brain scans, it flickered, grey and dull. What science was trying to work out was the link between this dead zone and gadgets. When we chat on the mobile phone, text furiously, browse the BlackBerry, or commune with our car's global positioning system (GPS), the lights go out."
attention  distraction  health  safety  psychology  mobile  phones  gps  texting  sms  focus 
september 2008 by robertogreco
textually.org: Phone a friend in exams
"A Sydney girls' school is redefining the concept of cheating by allowing students to "phone a friend" & use the internet & i-Pods during exams...giving the assessment method a trial run with year 9 English students...plans to expand to all subjects by end of year...students were being encouraged to access information from the internet, their mobile phones and podcasts played on mp3s as part of a series of 40-minute tasks. But to discourage plagiarism, they are required to cite all sources they use...Being able to find and apply the right information becomes more important than having it all in your head."
education  mobile  phones  plagiarism  cheating  schools  learning  knowledge  information  texting  internet  online  gamechanging 
august 2008 by robertogreco
A rallying cry against cyberbullying | Tech news blog - CNET News.com
"Tina Meier, the mother of Megan, said that change has to start with the kids, but parents need to talk more to their children. "The biggest thing I tell parents is to communicate and know what's going on with their child."
cyberbullying  bullying  online  internet  mobile  phones  behavior  chat  sms  technology  texting  web  im 
june 2008 by robertogreco
Putting people first » Recent immigrants driving advanced mobile phone use, both in Europe and in the US
"Interestingly, “the cell phone in some cases is being used as the primary computer for Latinos, serving up e-mail and the Internet, in the process bridging what has been called the digital divide that still exists for some minority and disadvantaged gr
mobile  phones  immigration  digitaldivide  smartphones  texting  sms  computing 
may 2008 by robertogreco
textually.org: Study. Texting is for old people
"Research by TNS of 17,000 people in 30 countries revealed that once users adopt mobile instant messaging services such as AIM and MSN Messenger on their mobile phones, they reduce their use of text messages."
sms  texting  trends  mobile  phones  communication  im 
april 2008 by robertogreco
jaxtr - link your phone
"With jaxtr, you bypass expensive international mobile fees. Now, for the first time, you can call friends and family overseas at the same cost and with the same convenience as calling a friend down the street.""
voip  phone  mobile  free  sms  texting  phones  socialmedia  socialnetworking  socialnetworks  voicemail  voice 
april 2008 by robertogreco
Text Messaging as Toy or Tool : OUPblog
"Americans are fixated on the dark side of cell phones...in Europe SMS first appeared in 1993, giving young people decade more experience with medium than American counterparts. What is still toy in US...pedestrian appliance elsewhere"
etiquette  technology  moderation  europe  us  sweden  italy  teens  youth  adaptation  beyondexuberance  society  norms  behavior  communication  voicemail  texting  sms  mobile  phones 
march 2008 by robertogreco
apophenia: how youth find privacy in interstitial spaces
"Generation gap & technology ruining everything stories will be forever more....it's important to remember that at end of the day, intentions and desires aren't changing... it's just architecture that makes practices possible that is."

"First and foremost, the notion of “privacy” is about having a sense of control over how and when information flows to who. Given the structures of their lives, teens have often had very little control over their social context. In school, at home, at church… there are always adults listening in. Forever more, there have been pressures to find interstitial spaces to assert control over communications. Note passing, whispering, putting notes in lockers, arranging simultaneous bathroom visits, pig latin, neighbor to neighbor string communication… all of these have been about trying to find ways to communicate outside of the watchful eyes of adults, an attempt to assert privacy while stuck in a fundamentally public context. The mobile phone is the next in line of a long line of efforts to communicate in the spaces between…

Over the years, parenting has become more and more about surveillance. In this mindset, good parents are those who stalk their kids…. There’s an arms race going on: parental surveillance vs. technology to assert privacy. We aren’t seeing the radical OMG technology ruins everything stage. We’re seeing the next in line of a long progression. And it’s just the beginning. The arms race is heating up. As parents implement keyboard tracking, kids go to texting. How long until parents demand that companies send them transcripts of everything? What will come next? We are in the midst of the privacy wars and it’s not so clean as “where’s my privacy” vs. “kids these days are so public.” The very nature of publicity and privacy are getting disrupted. As kids work to be invisible to people who hold direct power over them (parents, teachers, etc.), they happily expose themselves to audiences of peers. And they expose themselves to corporations. They know that the company can see everything they send through their servers/service, but who cares? Until these companies show clear allegiance with their parents, they’re happy to assume that the companies are on their side and can do them no harm."
danahboyd  parenting  education  children  privacy  surveillance  youth  teens  generations  communication  childhood  texting  sms 
march 2008 by robertogreco
Text Generation Gap: U R 2 Old (JK) - New York Times
"Children increasingly rely on personal technological devices like cellphones to define themselves and create social circles apart from their families, changing the way they communicate with their parents."
communication  culture  internet  mobile  phones  children  parenting  society  teens  texting  sms  trends 
march 2008 by robertogreco
BeamMe.Info: Web to SMS content delivery made simple
"BeamMe.Info is a new sms information service that allows companies to deliver free-to-user, requested information from their websites directly to customers mobile phones."
sms  texting  messaging  mobile  phones  applications  reminders  services  web  online  internet 
february 2008 by robertogreco
News Events, User Events, People >> all categories :: rejoices - pakistan - wisconsin
"goal: create a global community that shares news, videos, images and opinions tied to events and people that have impact. Unlike a traditional news portal, our style of presentation creates new contexts in which stories are tied together in order to prov
allvoices  citizen  currentevents  global  journalism  media  news  citizenjournalism  mobile  phones  texting  sms  vidoe  photography  images  maps  mapping  context  blogs  blogging  local  localization  unmediated  crowdsourcing 
february 2008 by robertogreco
Emily’s Playground » AllVoices Launches Participatory News Hybrid
"Providing multiple points of view by inviting mobile voice & text messages, images & videos from field & weaving them with local & regional news stories, wire services & blog posts, Allvoices creates context around local events & begins to make clearer p
allvoices  citizenjournalism  journalism  mobile  phones  texting  sms  vidoe  photography  images  maps  mapping  news  context  blogs  blogging  local  localization  unmediated  crowdsourcing 
february 2008 by robertogreco
“Ad absurdum” « Adam Greenfield’s Speedbird
"People without mobiles never need to use the toilet? This is differential permissioning at its most thoughtless."...Why are people so trusting of designers, when history is littered with evidence suggesting a contrary or at least a more nuanced take migh
ubicomp  policy  adamgreenfield  everyware  finland  toilets  sms  texting  access  security 
february 2008 by robertogreco
textually.org: Textonyms: Sophisticated pig latin
"Key words are replaced by first alternative that comes up on using predictive text ...replacement words, technically paragrams, but commonly known as extonyms, adaptonyms or cellodromes, are becoming part of regular teen banter."
language  mobile  phones  youth  teens  communication  trends  slang  texting  sms 
february 2008 by robertogreco
The True Price of SMS Messages » a gthing science project
"So let’s do some math here, and figure out how much this simple transmission is actually costing us."
messaging  sms  texting  mobile  phones  cost  data  pricing 
january 2008 by robertogreco
YouTube - History of the Predictive Text Swearing
"Armstrong and Miller genius work on why texting won't let you swear."
bbc  video  youtube  texting  language  english  predictivetext  t9 
january 2008 by robertogreco
collision detection: Is text-messaging the new word processor?
"But if you think of the phone as a new type of word processor, then a different picture emerges. The reason all these young people are writing novels is that they've discovered, quite by accident, that they're carrying typewriters around in their pockets
writing  trends  texting  youth  japan  literature  mobile  phones  tools  society  technology  constraints  clivethompson 
january 2008 by robertogreco
The Rise and Rise of Presence Applications « Jared Madden Blog
"But I believe that mobile blogging can be attributed to the fast take-up and continuity of use that PA’s are currently experiencing. So how is this technology changing the way we connect and interact?"
presence  twitter  jaiku  ambientintimacy  microblogging  web  online  internet  texting  mobile  phones 
january 2008 by robertogreco
Middle East Online - Iranians’ love-affair with texting
"Texting in Iran amounts to popular struggle to talk freely about politics, break social taboos."
texting  iran  workarounds  freedom  democracy  communication  mobile  phones  society 
january 2008 by robertogreco
receiver - Light touches – text messaging, intimacy & photography by Matt Locke
"Technology often promises transcendence from real life but is eventually domesticated through interaction with real bodies in real spaces. We find new relationships with technologies by rubbing our corporeal bodies up against them, not by crossing a thre
touch  tactile  haptic  texting  sms  vibration  reality  virtuality  mobile  phones  intimacy  ambientintimacy  body  human  contact  photography  bodies 
january 2008 by robertogreco
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